Me March 10.jpg

Follow me on Google Scholar


Thank you for visiting my homepage. 

I am professor of history at De Montfort University's International Centre for Sports History and Culture (ICSHC). 

My latest book is The Oval World: A Global History of Rugby which is published by Bloomsbury.

I have worked for the BBC as a lead consultant on Radio 4's 2012 series Sport and the British and the BBC4 television documentary Eddie Waring: Mr Rugby League, as well as appearing in numerous other television and radio programmes. 

I am a trustee of Rugby League Cares, the rugby league charity, a member of the RFU's World Rugby Museum sub-committee, a director of the Hull Kingston Rovers Community Trust and a member of the Museum Board of the Raeburn Place Foundation. I am also a member of the Historians' Panel of the National Football Museum Hall of Fame.

I was chairperson of the British Society for Sports History in 2001 and the editor of the academic journal Sport in History from 2001 to 2007. Before joining the ICSHC I led the Institute for Northern Studies at Leeds Metropolitan University,

I am currently supervising the Arts and Humanities Research Council PhD studentship 'Women and Rugby League', which is a Collaborative Doctoral Award in partnership with the Rugby Football League, and 'An Oral History of England Rugby Union Internationals, 1945-95', which is also a Collaborative Award in partnership with the Rugby Football Union.

I am also supervising PhD students researching the history of women's cricket, sport in pre-World War One Bradford, cricket crowds and sport and the BBC in the inter-war years. Previous supervisions include the political sociology of the North of England, the history of rugby in Irelandcricket in Victorian Yorkshire and the anthropology of the rugby league transfer system.

If you would like to discuss research or study with me, or any other matter related to my work, please contact me at